The Guardsmen started in 1947 when an active group of civic-minded young professionals in San Francisco joined together to assess how they could impact the lives of disadvantaged children by creating opportunities to build life skills and make positive contributions to the community. Membership is through word-of-mouth and active members must be under 40 and meet an annual volunteer commitment. Since its inception, The Guardsmen has impacted hundreds of thousands of students through its scholarship and campership programs. Today, there are 150 active Guardsmen and more than 700 senior Guardsmen who collectively raise over $1.5 million annually through their volunteer efforts. As an all volunteer organization with minimal administrative costs, approximately 90 cents of every donated dollar goes directly to providing 2,500 Bay Area inner-city youth the opportunity to attend summer camp. They experience nature and outdoor activities which allow them experiences unavailable in the city. The Guardsmen also fund 260 scholarships for at-risk students to attend private education. The Guardsmen is a 501(c)(3) corporation which receives no state or federal assistance and does not have any fund-raising organization affiliation.